Posted by: Andi Arsana | October 5, 2007

Dr. Natalegawa

I was sitting in front of a Chase Bank counter in the UN secretariat building in the afternoon. I was helping Ritche, the new fellow from the Philippines open a bank account when accidentally I heard somebody was talking on the phone in Bahasa Indonesia. It is not very common to hear somebody speaking in Bahasa Indonesia in this building, especially when there is no international diplomat around. Being curious, I turned my head to the voice and surprisingly I discovered a familiar face.

The man talking on the phone was Dr. Marty Natalegawa, the Indonesian Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Nations (PTRI). Of course I recognized him as everybody in Indonesia seems to know him. We can easily see his face or his comments on TVs or newspapers. He was a famous Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs before appointed as the Indonesian Ambassador to United Kingdom. Now, he is currently the head of our mission in New York.

What a surprise to me. Coincidently, I was planning to visit him in his office and present him one of my books about Maritime Boundaries. I think the book will be quite important for him as a diplomat. It seemed to me that it was a good time to say hello and introduce myself. I waited until he finished talking on the phone and completed his paper work. “Selamat siang Pak Marty!”, I said and of course he was surprised. “Selamat siang!” he said before accepting my hand shake. I then told him briefly about me and informed him about what I am doing in New York.

The short conversation gave me an impression that he is a really nice person. He showed me his interest concerning the area I am currently working. I told him my idea to present him a book of mine and he was happy for that. He then asked me to contact his secretary for arranging a meeting. “I want to know more about the topic”, he said.

Pak Budi, his secretary, tentatively arranged a meeting for me with Dr. Natalegawa on Tuesday, 9 October 2007 at 5 pm. It is to me a great chance for networking and also for real contribution to Indonesia. See you on Tuesday.


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